The earthquakes shook more than the ground five years ago; social lives also took a hit as many of the city’s beloved watering holes and slinky restaurants and bars lay ruined. Fast forward five years and the Christchurch hospo scene has seen a massive resurgence transitioning from container bars and pop ups through to swanky post-quake affairs of old. With bar and restaurant levels in the city higher than before the earthquakes and more venues on the horizon, Cityscape caught up with some of Christchurch’s renowned hospitality operators and some new faces on how the city’s nightlife scene has changed, how to create a desirable venue and what we can expect in the future.
TONY ASTLE, STEALTH HOSPITALITY
The driving force behind some of the city’s most beloved and highly regarded dining and drinking spots dating back to popular underground Lichfield Street haunt The Licker Lounge back in the mid-90s,...
Basking in the sun with a cooling sea breeze and stunning views out across the port – Freemans' celebrated deck is one of Christchurch’s top spots for a summer tipple.
Literally minutes from the city but miles from care in portside town Lyttelton, this Italian institution combines hearty home-made fare (their zucchini fries and gnocchi with pan-fried chorizo are worth walking over the Bridle Path for!) with lush house-made sodas, fine Nelson wines and perfectly chilled beers dispensed from their funky new bar.
A brightly coloured mural courtesy of local artist Wongi brings the port action right up on the deck, while on Sundays, live music from local jazz legend Carmel Courtney and friends from 3.30pm ends the weekend on the perfect note – just get their early as the tables are gobbled up as quickly as the exquisite fare.